Louisville Cardinals safety Calvin Pryor (25). David Manning-USA TODAY Sports

NFL Draft Player Profiles: Q&A Series


Over the past two months we have brought you an inside look at dozens of NFL Draft prospects here at Lombardi Ave with our player Q&A series.

We had the opportunity to sit down with several players via phone or email and hear their thoughts on their strengths and weaknesses as a player, a little bit about their background, and how they would feel about playing in the NFL, specifically for the Green Bay Packers next season.

In constructing these player interviews I tried to reach out to players that I believe had a legitimate chance of landing with Green Bay on draft day. I didn’t even waste time trying to get ahold top-ten locks like Jadeveon Clowney or Sammy Watkins (not saying I could even if I tried), but I did speak with a few potential first-rounders, like Aaron Donald and Calvin Pryor–both players that could be considered with Green Bay’s 21st overall pick.

More importantly, I was able to speak with a number of projected second day players, like Iowa’s Christian Kirksey, Louisville’s Marcus Smith, and Notre Dame’s Troy Niklas, who would not only meet a major need on the Packers roster but would also be great value in the second or third round of the draft.

As you can see, I spoke with plenty of players at positions I believe are major needs on the Packers roster going into the draft, like safety, linebacker, and defensive line. I even spoke with a few tight ends, wide receivers, and offensive linemen.

Overall, it was great to hear from the players firsthand about their game and their expectations heading into the draft. I was taken aback by the response from these players and how grateful and appreciative they were just to have the opportunity to share their thoughts about their game and themselves with the fans.

Most of the players expressed they would feel excited to play in Green Bay and would appreciate the opportunity to play for such a historic franchise and for such great fans. The Packers organization and fan base are notorious for being classy and supportive, and I think this resonates in the players’ responses about playing in Green Bay.

If you have not had the chance to check out our interviews with these 34 draft prospects, I highly recommend you skim through this list and read a few. Heck, read all of them. But not because they are pieces I wrote.

In all honesty, what makes these Q&A pieces work is we get the opportunity as fans to hear firsthand from the players. It’s the players’ responses that carry these pieces, and as a fan of both the draft and the Packers, I enjoyed learning more about each player through these interviews and I hope you do too.

Here are all of the player Q&As we ran the past two months. I also included our interview with NFL Draft expert Tony Pauline if you want a nice draft overview for the Packers.

Let me know what you think, and if you have any suggestions for how to run this series next year, let me know in the comments sections below. I would love to get your feedback because this is just as much for you, the reader, as it is for me.


Player Q&As by Position

Quarterback (1)

Keith WenningBall State (Late Round)


Rutgers Scarlet Knights wide receiver Brandon Coleman (17) beats Notre Dame Fighting Irish cornerback Bennett Jackson (2). Andrew Mills/THE STAR-LEDGER via USA TODAY Sports

Wide Receiver (3)

Brandon ColemanRutgers (Early-Mid Round)

Devin StreetPittsburgh (Mid Round)

Michael CampanaroWake Forest (Mid Round)


Tight End (2)

Troy NiklasNotre Dame (Early Round)

Crockett GillmoreColorado State (Mid Round)


Offensive Line (3)

Brandon ThomasClemson (Early Round)

Anthony SteenAlabama (Early-Mid Round)

Travis SwansonArkansas (Mid Round)


Notre Dame Fighting Irish defensive end Stephon Tuitt (7). Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

Defensive Line (9)

Aaron DonaldPittsburgh (Top 20)

Stephon TuittNotre Dame (Early Round)

Brent UrbanVirginia (Early Round)

Kelcy QuarlesSouth Carolina (Early Round)

Will ClarkeWest Virginia (Early-Mid Round)

Josh MauroStanford (Mid Round)

Calvin Barnett, Oklahoma State (Late Round)

Jay BromleySyracuse (Late Round)

Robert ThomasArkansas (Late Round)


Inside Linebacker (3)

Yawin SmallwoodUConn (Early-Mid Round)

Christian KirkseyIowa (Early-Mid Round)

Preston BrownLouisville (Mid Round)

Louisville Cardinals defensive end Marcus Smith (91). Jamie Rhodes-USA TODAY Sports

Louisville Cardinals defensive end Marcus Smith (91). Jamie Rhodes-USA TODAY Sports


Outside Linebacker (5)

Marcus SmithLouisville (Early Round)

Cassius MarshUCLA (Mid Round)

Kasim EdebaliBoston College (Mid Round)

Michael SamMissouri (Late Round)

Chaz SuttonSouth Carolina (Late Round)


Cornerback (3)

Victor HamptonSouth Carolina (Early Round)

Ross CockrellDuke (Mid Round)

Bennett JacksonNotre Dame (Mid Round)


Baylor Bears safety Ahmad Dixon (6). Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Safety (5)

Calvin PryorLouisville (First Round)

Ed ReynoldsStanford (Early Round)

Ahmad DixonBaylor (Early-Mid Round)

Hakeem SmithLouisville (Late Round)

Ty ZimmermanKansas State (Late Round)


Draft Overview

Interview with NFL Draft Scout Tony Pauline.


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Tags: Aaron Donald Calvin Pryor Green Bay Packers NFL Draft Stephon Tuitt

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